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Ohio Tax Climate Chilly

A Washington-based non-partisan group called The Tax Foundation does an annual analysis of which states have the friendliest tax systems for encouraging business growth. Ohio comes in near the bottom of the list --- 47th in the latest rankings. The surrounding states of Indiana, Michigan and Pennsylvania have much better ratings.

Study author Joshua Barro says of all the taxes that figure into the overall ranking, it's the personal income tax that is the most burdensome.

BARRO: In addition, the system is complicated. It has nine tax brackets, plus an exemption. A taxpayer who's in the top bracket, earning over $200,000, has a tax rate that steps up over ten times, as that goes through. Now, most taxpayers obviously aren't in that top bracket, but since the brackets are fairly well spread out, taxpayers do tend to step up significantly above the lowest tax rate.

Ohio also ranks below the median in corporate, sales and property taxes. A bright spot is the unemployment tax - Ohio ranks 15th in that category.

David C. Barnett was a senior arts & culture reporter for Ideastream Public Media. He retired in October 2022.